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Life around the world

What's with all the fish in China?

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Nothing in China is taken for granted. Every step, design, and decoration is carefully considered before taking form in reality. The reason for this is that the Chinese people assign meaning to everything; from how the chopsticks are left at the end of a meal, to the inclusion of fish-filled waters in many places.

Wandering around China, I cannot help but notice that fish are everywhere. You don’t have to go far to find ponds, streams, rivers, fountains or simpler still; fish bowls. You’re sure to find some water feature included in most Chinese places, and quite often, there resides a fishy-friend or two.

There are a large number of fish living in a pond at the school where I work. The pupils often feed the fish with bread during lunch or after school. If you walk over to the pond, the fish swim up to the surface in eager groups, waiting to be fed. They seem quite friendly for fish!

Similarly, on a trip to a local nursery to buy some plants, I noticed a small pond that ran around the store, and in it swam more fish. The pond, though small, was deep, and in it, some of the fish had grown to at least three foot! I have seen fish kept in bowls on tables in many hotels and restaurants, and many Chinese families keep aquariums at home.
So what’s with all the fish?

This all comes down to the traditional Chinese practice of Feng Shui; an ancient philosophy based on the idea of exchanging energies. It is believed that having knowledge of the natural energies in life can bring good fortune and harmony to a person by harnessing the positive energy.

Water is one of the five key elements in Feng Shui, representing renewal and release. Fish are symbolic of wealth. Adding fish to a pond or an aquarium to the home is thought to bring wealth. Sometimes, the number of fish in a pond or aquarium has meaning too. Eight gold fish and one black fish in an aquarium are thought to be lucky as the gold fish encourages wealth, while the black fish wards off evil.

As fish seem to bring positive energy, I think it’s time I head to the pet shop and add some lucky fish to my home!


Have you ever heard of Feng Shui? Do you believe that water and fish can bring positive energy to a place? 


patchyplum's picture
patchyplum 27 January, 2015 - 14:16

Yes,I have heard and most srilankans believe in Feng Shui and we have centers and books on Feng Shui.There is something in this though it's mystical it works, of course.People,here in Srilanka believe in Feng Shui and have laughing Buddha or their symbolic representative in their homes.I too have a bracelet made according to Feng Shui theory from china.I think that there's some unsee,not quite powerful though,I'm not sure,power in fish,specially goldfish.Cardiac doctors have adviced people with heart problems have goldfish tanks in a possible view place,which they believe give them a positive energy.

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MALINE's picture
MALINE 20 October, 2013 - 15:11

I do believe in positive energy but I don´t think it depends on a symbol,I believe it has to be with your attitude.

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KLEA B's picture
KLEA B 19 October, 2013 - 08:59

I think that everything could be positive if we want to . The water and the fishes are some of the things that complete our positive day but we are those who make a perfect day ,then a weak, month, year and a life.

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learningenglish282's picture
learningenglish282 18 October, 2013 - 16:18

Yes, i have heard of Feng Shui and i do believe that water and fish can bring energy to a place. My Dad also said that goldfish and carp fish have great meaning in Chinese culture, gold fish brings fortune, money, wealth and carp fish can bring luck and smoothness to everything we do :))

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Natalija's picture
Natalija 16 October, 2013 - 16:10

I've heard of Feng Shui and I believe in it. I like reading articles about Feng Shui and I've decorated my room in according with Feng Shui. For example, I heard that according to it, you shouldn't put your mirror in front of your door, because it will "reject"happiness in your home. I think it makes sense.

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Lavender's picture
Lavender 16 October, 2013 - 09:38

Yes, I have. Feng Shui is very popular in my country. As I know, Feng is the wind and Shui is the water, they are 2 crucial elements on earth. People believe if they are in harmony in your house, your office it can bring you wealth and good health.

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Harabeli Supersweet's picture
Harabeli Supersweet 13 October, 2013 - 17:37

I haven't heard about Feng Shui. I believe that water and fish can bring positive energy to a place. I feel great when I'm near the sea, because I love swimming. So, I can say that it brings positive energy to me.

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